17 Apr 2017
19 May 2013
I was good at arithmetic in school (adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing), but I never had a mathematical mind. I struggled through algebra. I don't retain dates or phone numbers well, despite my good memory. When a friend decided to major in math, I didn't understand it. How boring, dry, difficult, cold!
I've changed my opinion since homeschooling. D and M have the Rossini affinity for numbers. They're interest ignites mine. But beyond that, I've learned that math can be beautiful!
I first heard the term poetic math in this article from Mater at Magistra. Author Lesley Payne says that math, like literature, can " instill in our children awe toward the beautiful, poetic aspects of creation." Scientists use math to discover laws of nature. So shouldn't lovers of beauty appreciate math as well?
Math, poetry and patterns
One thing that transformed my view on math was thinking about it in terms of patterns, not numbers. Joseph's coat, patchwork quilts, and even poems have patterns. In fact, we used all of these to include math in our unit on Joseph and His Brothers.
The simplest nursery rhyme has a pattern, a rhyme scheme that could as easily be called 1-2-1-2 as a-b-a-b. Shakespeare's sonnets have meter. Haiku is especially mathematical.
Find resources for poetic math in the rest of this post at Contemplative Homeschool.
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